Grateful Dead Live at Public Hall on 1973-12-06
SBD MR > 1 cass gen > DAT > (AUD patching)> CD > EAC > SHN> slight retrack for d2t3, d3t1, d3t4> shnv2 on those tracks; d3 tracked for 80 min; see notes in info file; seed via David Gans, Jim Powell, Dave Greenberg; shns via Seth Kaplan, Alan Fink, G.S. Hamilton
Crowd: ::Raucous Applause::
Subject: To be tripping again
This sound along with the set list and great listen gives this show a pure 5 stars
Subject: A psychedelic tour de force
The Dead in late 1973 were as hot as they ever got - every show from this tour is strong, and they played each set and song with focus and polish. They had perfected their skills as musicians and performers, and could switch at will from hard-driving, tight rock & roll to that sweet '73 "honey" sound to deep space exploration. Phil in particular was super-energetic on this tour, often playing "lead bass" and extended jams with mega bombs and feedback. What's so great about this Dark Star is that you get the band at the peak of their powers completely abandoning all reason, logic, and control, letting themselves get taken as far into the void as they ever went.
A funny thing about this Dark Star is it doesn't really start; the tuning after Big River simply dissolves into a series of spacey jams and soon you realize that this is in fact the plan. About 12 minutes in Phil fires the engines and turns the ship out of orbit, until at 17 minutes we have arrived in the deepest, darkest part of the galaxy, a place inhabited by giant, planet-sized beings made of multi-color translucent goo. We wander here for a while, the engines shut down, the ship's sails filled by the cosmic winds. Only at 21 minutes into the song do they actually start *playing* the song, and the melody and first verse is delivered soft and relaxed to fit the mood. We then return to our journey through time, and there follows ten solid minutes of far-out space, ranging from the quietest moments to full-on feedback from all cylinders. At about 36 minutes we start the return trip, passing through more familiar systems on our way back home. This is truly a masterwork of the Grateful Dead's darkest muse.
The Eyes that follows is a cool, refreshing breeze after such a long trip. It's plenty Dark Starred too - listen as the chaos creeps into the jam at the 9 minute mark and the Dead pull the song back from the brink - must have been fun.
This is truly an epic show with a Dark Star for the ages. I hope that hundreds of years from now people are still listening to this as reverently as we are now.
Subject: Spin Spin Spin
Subject: Agree with lescaret
Sometimes the mind meanders, sometimes it is clear light. It is all Mind, and it is limited if any element is absent.
I call this version the Higgs Field of Dark Stars. Lots of space to navigate through, some freely, some by picking up more mass.
Subject: Joyful Intellectual Meanderings, The Ambiguity of Art
I refer to this tantalizingly opaque "Dark Star," this brooding, intellectual meander that is unlike any other "Dark Star" you'll probably ever hear. I don't know of another like it. This version is transcendent and essential, a weird tangential musical exploration on a cold December night in Cleveland, Ohio in 1973.
But deadheaddave in a review from June 2010 disparages this "Dark Star", suggests it's listless, flat, uninspired.
And quinn_76 calls it "aimless meandering".
Both are right! For themselves. While others, myself included, find something else in it, are powerfully taken by it, we slake our thirst for the Unknown by listening to it.
Is the Mona Lisa smiling in delight or smiling in rueful resignation? Or is she smirking? Does she possess knowledge of the psychedelic self? Is David Foster Wallace's "Infinite Jest" a masterpiece, his generation's "Ulysses"? Or a bloated, self-indulgent tome full of run-on sentences? Is Allen Ginsberg's "Howl" a profane yawp of gibberish? Or the foundational poetic text for the second half of the 20th century?
To make vast pronouncements of pedantic certainty is to miss the point of the Dead and of Art itself.
Or as Whitman said - "Do I contradict myself? Very well then, I contradict myself. I contain multitudes."
Subject: A Sober(ing) Review: two & a half stars
To start, the first set of this show in Cleveland offers a standard menu of ditties that are played with an underwhelming level of gusto and inspiration, all things being equal. Allow me to cherry-pick a few numbers from the first set to illustrate my point. Not unlike many folks, I love the TLEO’s of '73, but this one feels sluggish and phoned-in, and is far inferior to others played this year (look to 2/15, 3/22, 9/7, 11/9, 11/30 for examples). Bobby Ace's seemingly strained vocals on GSET are not his best offering, and the ending segment of the song never quite broaches the jamming apex of other versions of the year (2/26 & 11/9 come to mind). The CHINA->RIDER paring to close the first set is executed pleasantly enough, but can one name one in '73 that isn’t? (And there are far superior versions offered from the year: 3/22, 3/16, 11/11, 11/14 come directly to mind....)
The second set (not surprisingly) offers more ear glitter than the first, but still ultimately leaves something to be desired—based on all the hype it gets. In order to avoid filibustering the obvious point of discussion for this set, I'll be curt and address the elephant in the room: DARK STAR! Clocking in at nearly 44 minutes, this version on the surface should be every Head's wet dream, and then some. Well… perhaps. Although this particular DS far & away exceeds its quota in terms of length, that doesn't necessary mean it does so in terms of performance. I’m of the persuasion that the long-winded duration and over-hyped chitter-chatter have blindsided some listener’s objective judgment. Get the cotton of yer ears folks! Yes, it’s a very long DS from the greatest band to have graced this earth, but there are many versions that should—and do—rank above this one. It should go without saying, but nevertheless I’ll divulge: 2/27/69, 2/13/70, 9/19/70, 2/18/71, 4/8/72, 5/11/72, 8/27/72, 9/21/72… to name a few). But I digress. Anyway, for this DS on this particular night, a little more focus, and a little less aimless meandering would have made this one a much stronger candidate for the best of 1973. At one point around a 1/4 of the way through this DS, Mr. Lesh tries to inject some adrenaline into this otherwise lifeless beast by plucking Phil bombs in the hopes of making something happen. It seems as if the boys begin to follow his lead, but it is only fleeting, and the half-baked jam wanders off again into a sedated directionless fixture of sound. In truth, this version never hits the peaks and valleys of other versions from this year (2/15 & 11/11 are the obvious ones, while10/19 & 12/18 deserve an honorable mention). The EYES that follows the DS, while good (even the worst Eyes of '73 is still stellar!) is nowhere near the best of the year. (Look to 2/15, 2/22, 5/26, 9/7, 10/19, 10/29, 11/11 for prime candidates).
Again, not to pee on everyone's parade here, but in a year like 1973, we all need to be ever mindful about being very objective about every show played in this incredible year. Of course, I’ll concede that this is a decent show (It's 1973, by jove!), but compared to some of its brothers & sisters of the same year, it pails IMHO.
I urge everyone to please listen objectively and perhaps you'll see my point...which is that this show seems to get inordinately praise precisely because of its extraordinarily long DARK STAR, and, in-turn, has garnered much hype, be it warranted or not.
I have a suspicion some curious listeners unfamiliar with certain shows or year(s) might stumble upon a show like this one, partly because it has so many reviews and it has attracted so much discussion that a snowball effect began to take shape. If I were less familiar was an era and was looking for a ’73 show, I might listen to this one first without having the benefit of hearing others, and be blown away by this night bar-none! After all, it’s a Grateful Dead show played in ’73, which, all told, is high caliber music. But if I had already listened to the likes of shows from 2/15, 2/19, 3/22, 3/24, 10/19, 10/21, 11/11, 11/14, 11/17, 11/30, 12/2, 12/18, 12/19… well… well…
But each to his/her own. My two cents on this one has been written. BTW, this show is only the second most overrated show of ’73 IMHO… the prize for #1 goes to 6/10!
Be kind, love thy neighbor, and listen to the Grateful DEAD!
p.s. All grievances aside, I must mention the HERE COMES SUNSHINE from this night. This version is one to behold, indeed! This one should be placed among the likes of 12/19, 11/30 & 11/17.
Subject: Hiding my joy!
Subject: keep on truckin
Subject: Another Great Show from a Great Year
Subject: Dark Star
Subject: I was ther...eeeeeeeee
Subject: Hey deadheaddave
Subject: My Review
Subject: Branes for your brains
Some time ago I reviewed a Dark Star that I thought was this one with a review entitled "More not necessarily better." I don't see my review here now or for any other copy of this show. Also, I don't understand how I could have been writing about this show, since I wrote something to the effect that Dark Star meandered for a long time before the verse and then dissolved into a mess during which they were barely playing for minutes at a time. That couldn't be further from the truth here. They keep up the intensity for the full 43 min, and in fact they could have gone longer. The one thing I did notice is that Weir either is missing entirely from Dark Star or is mixed so low as to be inaudible. His guitar reappears at the beginning of Eyes, but disappears again, although his singing is loud and clear.
China>Rider is the highlight of a rather blase first set, while HCS is an all-star version, giving a taste of what is to come. Eyes is fine, but nothing special for that period. On the strength of the Dark Star, however, this has to get 5 stars.
Subject: Here Comes Sunshine
Subject: Dark Star, Perfected
Phil and Keith ... damn
and the best HCS too.
Subject: but seriously
also kieth is freaking killing it with the organ on this one.
every limb in tandem. every stroke executed in the group mind. so, so, so very sweet.
the grateful goddamned dead boys and girls.
the grateful goddamned dead.
Subject: Top 5 of the year!
I believe the Dead peaked in Nov. and Dec. of '73, and they peaked again in May and June of '77(Gee, could it be because Donna was absent for a majority of Nov/Dec '73, and actually sounded good in '77? Not really. Actually I'm a fan of hers, but it just seems like ripping Donna is the cool thing to do here.). You can't really go wrong with any show from these months, and this show is a perfect example of why.
Subject: A REAL Dark, Star
5 Stars for the Star alone mateys. Stay merry
Subject: A REAL Dark, Star
5 Stars for the Star alone mateys. Stay merry
Subject: Just the Boys!
To me, it's NOT about the DarkStar, which I think is fantastic and mellow and spacey for about half the length of its 45 minute running time before it devolves into the usual '73 nonsensical meandering noise, but the real gorgeous stuff is to be found in nearly every other song, with the addition of the subtraction of Donna--missing while delivering/caring for child. (BTW: I don't always hate on Donna...it's just nice to hear a show or 2 w/out her sometimes in the way out-of-tune harmonizing).
So the thing to really watch out for here is the hands-down best-ever jazz-driven epic performance of HERE COMES SUNSHINE, made even better by Jerry really belting out the lyrics, and yes, one of the all-time great CHINA>RIDER's you'll ever hear. Flawless transition into the MLB jam. There's also a dazzling EYES and a simply beautiful rendition of ROW JIMMY that stands with some of the best the band ever played.
This show is now getting a ton of play and I'm still finding new reasons to love it every time. Just an amazing performance--for any year!
Subject: feeling grateful
Subject: The GRATEFUL DEAD "Live On Stage" December 6, 1973, at the Public Hall, Cleveland, OH, U.S.A.
I recommend adding this show to your 1973 GRATEFUL DEAD collection.
I also recommend buying the 1973 Box Set containing the "Complete" Winterland shows from November 9, 10, & 11. And Cinninati Gardens, Cleveland, December 4, 1973. It's a 9 disc Box Set. Here's the link:
Eat, Drink, Be Merry and Listen to the GRATEFUL DEAD.
Thanks for the Love from 1973.
Subject: Threre are few shows as good as this one
Subject: Convention Center/Public Hall
Subject: Time Machine
Truly a blessing, this Archive. God bless you.
Subject: China Rider
Subject: thanks very much
Subject: In Sickness and .in ...
Just so tight as a band at this point, they play like fingers on the same hand - One Mind.
This may be the best Dark Star ever - I don't throw that out easily, I understand 9-21-72, 11-11-73, 8-27-72, 4-24-72, 10-26-89 and others have strong cases as well.
Subject: dark..........help me!
Subject: here comes a bad ass sunshine
Subject: Typical late '73 deliciousness
Subject: No Donna
Subject: Crashes, indeed
Subject: dark star!
top 3 ever!
Subject: Dark Star!!!!
P.s: What the hell is anotherdavid talking about? It's obvious that the guy hasn't even listened to this copy of the show. A 5 min Eyes? Look at the text file: Eyes lasts 13:57. Whatever hashish this guy is on, I don't want to know about it.
Subject: WRONG SHOW
Subject: I love Phil!
Subject: Around & Around
The seastonesque dark star is one of the longest I have heard but its the eyes and the sugar mag that rock this.
Subject: Definitely nasty
Subject: Definitely nasty
Subject: Definitely nasty
Subject: get this
Subject: '74 Show with '73 Sound
Edit 9/17/04> I have been downloading shows like crazy and this one cannot get out of my CD player. Absolute must get for Jerry jamming. Also Beware! 1) Phil is turned wayyyyy up at times. I have had speaker problems because of the ending to the China>Rider. 2) The AUD patch at the end of HC Sunshine is a huge buzz kill. A better sounding patch is needed because all SBDs I have heard have this cut.
Subject: Top Ten!
What a stupendous show! If this doesn't light up your Xmas tree, check your pulse. I never get tired of this show! Excellent playing throughout. There is the fine, fine Dark Star>Eyes>China Doll played on 2/15 and 2/22, and the Dark Star>Stella Blue>Eyes from 10/30. But this Dark Star>Eyes>Stella tops them all for me. Phil is really on, and Jerry is really inspired. Get out this show during the holidaze with Egg Nog! BTW - this is the 3rd longest Star as listed. 5/11 is the longest, anyone know the 2nd longest? My notes say 11/19/72 Dark Star is the runner up. Anyone?
Dr. Flashback ;-)
Subject: regarding the dark star...
Subject: NOT the longest Dark Star
"The Dark Star is the third longest known at 43:28"
Subject: This one's a gem.